Collection of Ian Yonge, 1-10-05
Finest Transcontinental System in World Also Envisioned by Col. R.H. Mulock
AVIATION STAFF DINED
Pilots of Canadian Airways Entertained Ground Organization - Only Eight Mechanical Failures
Extract from Montreal Gazette December 22nd 1930
Courtesy of Ian Yonge, 1-10-05
The motive underlying the gathering is contained in a paragraph appearing on the menu, which reads "We pilots of the Airmail and Survey Divisions of Canadian Airways Limited, take great pleasure in extending to all members of the ground organisation, particularly those directly responsible for maintaining our aircraft to the present high standard of operating efficiency, this evening of entertainment, as a slight expression of our appreciation" The pilots responsible for the dinner and theatre part given afterwards at the Orpheum are: R.B. Bibby, F.W.Bone, E.C. Burton, J.F.Buthell, G.W. Dean, W.Fowler, R. George, V.J. Hatton, A.F.Ingram, W.H. Irvine, B. Martin, K.F.Saunders, A. Schneider, H.C.W. Smith, R. Vachon, O.C.S. Wallace, H.D. ward, W. Woollett, J.A. Yonge.
In welcoming seventy members of staff, including pilots, mechanics and office personnel, together with a number of guests, Captain Arthur F. Ingram, operating manager of the mail division, chairman, complemented all groups on excellent results achieved. He explained that to date air planes of the Company had covered 540,508 miles during the current year. H.C.W. Smith had 76,056 miles to his credit during the twelve months, followed by Bernard Martin with 72,581 and V.J. "Shorty" Hatton with 70,939. Many of the other fliers had recorded mileages of over sixty thousand.
Colonel Mulock spoke with enthusiasm of the loyalty of all those connected with the organization, which alone was responsible for the sound position in which the Company now finds itself. "Two years ago" he said "we were trying to effect alterations in aviation. Today Canadian Airways is between two and three years ahead of its programme. We have had a hard struggle but everyone has played the game and enabled us to lay a firm foundation on which to build a larger structure.
We could not disclose our plans while the organisation was passing through its initial stags of development, but I am now in a position to say that these are rapidly nearing consummation. We expect to establish the finest trans continental system not only in Canada but in the World. You all know the difficulties experienced by the Canadian Pacific Railway in building its line from coast to coast and the hardships faced by the Grand Trunk and Grand Trunk Pacific (now merged into the Canadian National Railways) in laying down its network of tracks throughout the Dominion.
I may tell you that we look forward to the day when forty or fifty passenger aircraft will be flying from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Canada is in a strong strategic position, and we should be able to surpass every other nation in the World in the establishment of high speed connections. London will be brought within three days of Montreal and as New York is only three hours from this City, the American metropolis will be only three days distance from London via Canada."
Colonel Mulock paid tribute to the pilots and ground crews, explaining with what pleasure he addressed the personnel at this first gathering. He expressed the hope that another party would be held next year, and that some of the most prominent men in Canada would be gathered round the tables. "We have come through hard times" he continued "and with poor equipment. I can promise you that better and more modern equipment will be provided, and that this will enable even higher speeds to be maintained on the various services."
Canadian Airways has established a high reputation in the United States, the assistant to the President continued, and its activities were discussed by delegates from the Dominions, attending the Imperial Conference in London. A hope was expressed that the Company would continue to advance and that its achievements would receive the support of Canadians from coast to coast. In conclusion Colonel Mulock expressed appreciation to the Government for its assistance and to various members of the Department of National Defence who were present at the dinner.
FEW FORCED LANDINGS
Captain Ingrams bore testimony to the excellent work of the ground staff in pointing out that only eight forced landings during the year were due to mechanical failure. There was a total of 104 but the balance were due entirely to bad weather conditions which the pilots frequently encountered. He also expressed to Pari Arbo of Brownville, the gratitude of all pilots on the Montreal St Johns route for his assistance and co-operation in providing an excellent emergency landing field on his farm and his continuous courtesy to those forced by bad weather to land at Brownville.
Among other guests at the dinner were: L.J. Dalton, assistant general manager of the eastern lines and operating manager of the survey division; H.M. Semple assistant secretary-treasurer, eastern lines Canadian Airways; Stuart Graham, inspector of air regulations for the Quebec and Maritimes district; George G. Wakeman, airways inspector, eastern division; F.I. Banghart, airport manager at St. Hubert; Paul E. Jensen, excise examiner and customs inspector at St. Hubert; and J. Fergus grant aviation correspondent, the Gazette "Alfie" Bate sixteen years of age, youngest but one of the oldest members of the organisation in point of seniority, was a happy member of the gathering, at which entertainment was provided by Jiim Hertte, a member of the maintenance staff on the violin, and Sidney Woodham of the radio staff, on the piano, together with Jack Brignall. The company went on afterwards to attend a performance of "Are you a Mason?" at the Orpheum Theatre, for which seats have been reserved. The menu, which indicated an aeronautical atmosphere was as follows: "Contact – Aviation Spirit Inertia Starter (Assiette Parisienne) Ribs a la Stearmail (Celery) Pitcain Doughnuts (Olives) Marvelube Aha (cream of Chicken) Fuselage 71 Roti avec Sauce a la Wasp (Roast Turkey with Cranberry Sauce), Des Backfires au Gypsey (String Beans), Whirlwind Murphies (Potato Olivette), Salade du Foker et FC-2 (Salade de Saison), Glace a Margaret Elizabeth (Vacherin), International Dope (Café Noir) – Switch Off". The tables were artistically arranged placed in the form of an airplane with wings folded and the salon was hung with orange and blue streamers, colours of Canadian Airways.